Fox River WickDry Triathlon and Trail Socks

A pair of socks can make or break you.  They are often the difference between comfort and discomfort; and given the choice, who among us chooses the latter? Since 1900, Fox River Mills has been creating American made knitted socks.   This review will cover four pairs of socks from Fox River:  the WickDry Triathlon Ankle, the WickDry Triathlon Quarter, the Trail Ankle, and Trail Quarter. Thanks to Fox River for the opportunity te test these socks out.

For the sake of reviewing these socks, I will lump them into two reviews since two pairs of socks are merely variations of the other two. I will make clear any differences in the variations between the styles.

WikDry Triathlon:

Fox River WickDry Triathlon and Trail Socks

Triathlon Ankle

 

Triathlon Crew

Triathlon Crew

I am testing both the ankle and quarter versions of this sock.  The only difference in the two being the length that the sock reaches at or above the ankle.  I will be testing this sock primarily while road biking and want to compare the difference in the comfort/discomfort of the higher reaching sock.

Specs:

  • Mens/Unisex
  • Memory-knit construction so that the socks hold their form wash after wash
  • Contoured rib top
  • Spandex compression zones
  • Vented panels
  • Material: 65% CoolMax® polyester, 33% nylon, 2% spandex

The best thing about these socks: no cotton! The polyester, nylon, and spandex should make a great material for a sock designed for moderate to hot weather.   The “contoured rib top” is designed to prevent slippage while wearing the socks. The “spandex compression zones” serve a similar purpose as the rib top as it prevents slippage, but it also provides the arch of the foot with additional support. Vented panels and the CoolMax polyester mean that these socks are designed to keep feet cool and dry as you use them. These are the socks that you want to use on your runs, gym workouts, and bike rides.  The thin make-up of these socks doesn’t seem suited for any activities on the trail.

Trail

As with the Triathlon socks, I will also be testing two versions of the Fox River Trail sock: the Trail Ankle and the Trail Quarter. I will be testing these socks primarily on the trail; hiking, backpacking, and mountain biking.

Trail Ankle

Trail Ankle

Trail Quarter

Trail Quarter

Specs:

  • Mens/Unisex
  • WikDry moisture protection
  • Memory-knit construction so that the socks hold their form wash after wash
  • Spandex compression zones
  • Vented panels
  • Reinforced heel and toe
  • Material: 38% nylon,30% merino wool, 30% recycled polyester, 2% spandex

Once again: no cotton! I cannot say enough about wool socks.  If you have never worn or owned a pair, then you are missing out. While the Trail socks are not 100% wool, from my experience, a little bit of wool will go a long way.  Wool is very durable, I have owned some pairs of wool socks for 4+ years.  Wool is not just for cold weather either. I wear my wool socks year-round, and the combination of nylon, wool, and polyester with the Fox River Trail Socks will most likely allow you to get maximum use out of them.

The Trail ankle socks have extra cushioning at the heel where your Achilles tendon meets the heel cup of your shoe.   This padding should prove to be very comfortable on longer hiker and mountain biking where your ankles are moving around much more on your pedals.   The only drawback to the Trail Ankle is that the length is not long enough to prevent  debris from the trail from sneaking into sock. The Trail Quarter, while it doesn’t have the extra padding at the Achilles, it does reach higher up your leg, thus preventing trail debris from getting inside your sock.

Check back in a month to see my update on these four pair of socks from Fox River.

Kaleb R.

Update: 7.20.12

Every chance I’ve had, as long as I can keep up with the laundry, I have been wearing the WickDry Triathlon and Trail socks from Fox River. I’ve used the Trail Quarter and Ankle socks on almost all of my outdoor excursions: day hikes, bike rides, and everyday wear.  I’ve worn the Triathlon Crew and Ankle on road bike rides, workouts at the gym and during everyday use.

Conclusions:

  • I prefer wool (or at least some wool content) socks.  It seems that no matter what the activity, I prefer wearing wool to any other material.
  • The WickDry Triathlon socks are great socks! The padding and support are a welcome companion and they keep my feet cool and drier than many socks I have worn.
  • I prefer quarter length socks in almost almost activities.  While my wife doesn’t view longer length socks as the most stylish, I’ll wear them no matter how I look.  When outside, the extra length prevents dirt and debris from getting in the sock.  The extra length also provides extra protection from blisters and friction from your shoes.
  • Prepare for this: The wool in the socks suffers some initial degradation. From my experience this always happens to some extent with wool socks. Just pull this portions of wool off of the sock.

I really do like these socks from Fox River and will get much more use out of them. Check back in a month for my final update.

Final Update:Fox River WickDry Triathlon and Trail Socks 8.20.12

I’ve spent three months with these socks from Fox River.  Needless to say, they are usually the first pairs that I grab out of the sock drawer and the socks that I guard from the dog. Here are some photos of the socks after three months so that you can see the wear and tear:

Triathlon Ankle

 

Triathlon Crew

 

 Trail Ankle

Trail Quarter

As you can see, the Trail Quarter’s have the most noticeable wear.  From my experience, that is common for wool socks, especially your favorite pair out of the sock drawer.

In conclusion; I have NO complaints about any of these socks.  I prefer to wear wool socks for almost any activity, but once the wool trail socks are in the dirty laundry (and my wife doesn’t notice me wearing the stinking things two days in a row) I go straight to the Fox River Triathlon socks.

A bad pair of socks can ruin an adventure, but a good pair will make you forget you are even wearing them!

-Kaleb R.

 

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